Author Topic: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May  (Read 686 times)

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Offline 7LakesGuy

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Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« on: April 25, 2017, 11:24:26 pm »
I haven't posted here in a while, but I've got a big trip coming up and I figured it was worth the price of my COG renewal to come on here and solicit advice and support, as I'm worried I've bit off more than I can chew.

I think I have the logistics figured out - flying Air Canada, using their "Fly your bike" program to get discounted air freight over and back.  Had to learn about Dangerous Goods shipments, hired a specialist in Montreal to help me get the bike set on the way out, and hired a freight forwarder to receive it in the UK.  I should be able to fly on the same plane with the bike and pick it up 4-6 hours after landing.

From there, I've put together a map from a number of sources - great rides websites and a book called Biker's Britain The Tours - link to google maps below.  Yes I know I'll be over there during the Isle of Man races, don't think it's not killing me, but I can't "waste" several days of this monumental (for me) trip to detour via ferry.  As it stands, I already have an overly aggressive riding plan and I'll likely have to cut corners to stay on track.

Riding up to Montreal on May 21, loading the bike and flying overnight on May 22, arriving at Heathrow early on May 23 and the route starts from there assuming I can get on the road that afternoon.  I'm staying in a hotel in Hull the first night because I'm a big Doctor Who fan and I have to for geeky reasons, but the rest of the trip my plan is to camp some nights and rent Airbnb rooms from locals other nights.

Local advice is much appreciated.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1xD6ZuOZ7IxyTzxMxihlmLJn1Oas&usp=sharing
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Offline 4Bikes

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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2017, 11:53:14 pm »
It sounds like a great trip.  Never heard of that fly your bike program.  If it were me, I would be worried about forgetting to ride on the opposite side of the road, and the setup for the turns would be weird and would take some adjustments. Your tire wear should even out nicely. I'm posting to stay subscribed to see how this turns out.    :great:
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Offline Rico

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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2017, 10:25:20 am »
Just wondering how much it is to fly a bike over. Not that I'm doing that any time in the near 10 years....
Price vs Time? It would seem that with that much effort to fly the bike, why not 4 weeks instead?
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Offline 7LakesGuy

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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2017, 10:57:36 am »
If it were me, I would be worried about forgetting to ride on the opposite side of the road, and the setup for the turns would be weird and would take some adjustments. Your tire wear should even out nicely. I'm posting to stay subscribed to see how this turns out.    :great:

I had a chance to ride on a rented Royal Enfield in India last year, and it surprised me how quickly I acclimated to setting up and finding good cornering lines.  Dragged the muffler a few times, but aside from that it was a lot of fun.  I am making myself a promise not to be overly aggressive cornering on roads I don't know with rules and hazards I may not expect, etc.  I'll definitely follow up to let you all know how it goes

Just wondering how much it is to fly a bike over. Not that I'm doing that any time in the near 10 years....
Price vs Time? It would seem that with that much effort to fly the bike, why not 4 weeks instead?

Yeah, I'd definitely rather take 4 weeks... I can't get that much time off from work, it's pushing my luck to take 2 weeks.  The cost still works out - it's about $625 freight each way with the favorable conversion from CAD to USD, plus another $500 in miscellaneous costs, but renting a good touring bike for 2 weeks in the UK would be about the same.  This way is a bit more of an adventure, and I have the bonus of being on very familiar equipment.

The price of the Air Canada deal varies depending on destination, and the rules on the return trip also vary depending on the originating country's shipping and customs process.  I've probably put 100 hours into researching and planning the logistics, so I hope AC keeps the deal around so I can benefit from all the learning and do it again in 5 years to ride the Alps.  That trip is definitely going to be 3-4 weeks, if I'm going to ask my boss once in my career for that much vacation at once, that'll be the time.    ;)
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Online gPink

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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2017, 11:57:40 am »
You might talk to these folks... http://www.gtr1400.co.uk/forums/

You could also reach out to Boomer who is a member here.
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2017, 01:26:56 pm »
We rode 2 trips to Europe.
We were not in the UK though. Rode from Germany to France and back {with side trips}. {11 Countries}

Do you plan to stay in the UK or go across and ride other countries?

We rode with members of GCE (GTR Club of Europe).
They are from all over Europe.
Boomer is part of the GCE. Talked with him last week...
NOTE: GCE works with us on the Over the Pond project. Great folks.

One of the guys that went with us (Steve) shipped his bike over from Canada and {I think } was pretty happy with how that worked out.

Let me know if I can help you hook up with folks from GCE.

Ride safe, Ted
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Offline 7LakesGuy

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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2017, 01:08:24 am »
You might talk to these folks... http://www.gtr1400.co.uk/forums/


Thanks gPink - I posted on the UK forum, I appreciate the tip.

Do you plan to stay in the UK or go across and ride other countries?

We rode with members of GCE (GTR Club of Europe).
They are from all over Europe.
Boomer is part of the GCE. Talked with him last week...
NOTE: GCE works with us on the Over the Pond project. Great folks.

One of the guys that went with us (Steve) shipped his bike over from Canada and {I think } was pretty happy with how that worked out.

Let me know if I can help you hook up with folks from GCE.


Ted - I actually got the idea from Steve, met him on the *other* C14 Facebook group when he posted his UK pics last year.  He helped me out a lot with his experience and advice from his trip.

I am only going to be riding England-Scotland-Ireland-Wales, not getting over to Europe at all - although if this trip is successful, maybe in another 3-4 years I can do the same flying to Germany and riding the alps for 2-3 weeks!

I'd appreciate any connection to GCE, I think my biggest fear is being stuck somewhere with nobody local to help.  Hoping I don't need to call in any favors, but this kind of trip is the time you'll take whatever backup you can get, right?  PM me if you need any contact info from me.

Thanks
Guy
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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2017, 08:23:59 am »
Good luck on the trip and we'll need a ride report w/pics.  :beerchug:
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2017, 02:11:06 pm »
Got word from Bernd that he was headed to the Tour de Twisties Rally with other GCE Members.
Will be back next week and I can talk with him more.
I'll PM you then.

Ride safe, Ted
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Offline Kawasaurus

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Re: Flying my bike to the UK to ride 2 weeks at the end of May
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2017, 11:29:46 am »


I am only going to be riding England-Scotland-Ireland-Wales, not getting over to Europe at all - although if this trip is successful, maybe in another 3-4 years I can do the same flying to Germany and riding the alps for 2-3 weeks!

I'd appreciate any connection to GCE, I think my biggest fear is being stuck somewhere with nobody local to help.  Hoping I don't need to call in any favors, but this kind of trip is the time you'll take whatever backup you can get, right?  PM me if you need any contact info from me.

Thanks
Guy

Hey Man, if you want to come to Europe for riding in the Alps, contact me ( email: ralf.e.peter@gmail.com ) , i will help to find good hosts for staying overnight (not too expensive, and with good comfort), and guide you to the best twisties in the European Alps...

I live in Western Austria, close to the lake Constance, and directly at the entrance to the mountains.
Only five minutes away from my home begins the curvy roads..
follow me - if you can...
COG MiD #757809
living in Austria, Europe close to the lake Constance(Bodensee)

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtjYZY0ZzYfKZVCXmQeGO1w